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mommasboy

My mother has been diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer.

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Hello,

We just found out that my mother, 47 years old has stage IV lung cancer, on July 5th. So we are just now getting all the evaluations done. They found it in both lungs and in on her T7 on her spine. she is scheduled to start radiation this coming monday. We have not gotten a second opinion and I would like to know what people thinks about getting one? I have read alot of info about the cancer center of america in Oklahoma which I read was one of the best cancer treatment centers in america. Has anyone out there gone to that place and do they recomend it?

I am looking for all the info I could get that can help my mother fight this. She is real strong at this point and I want to know what to expect.

Thank you,

Jay

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Hi and welcome; Sorry to hear of the diagnosis, but Youve found a great place for info and support. Lot of folks will be along to help, Im sure.

2nd opinions are always good, if there is any doubt, confusion, or if ur uncomfortable with present docs diagnosis, etc. I trusted that my hospital got it right, but I would have gone for a 2nd if I had any doubt. Depends on how the patient feels about the situation, I guess.

Cant speak from experience, but I hear good things here about Can. centers of America...folks seem to be positive about them.

Keep checking here, and reading these boards for lots more info, and Im sure more replies will come shortly.

Good luck and keep us posted so we can better help...Rich B.

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Welcome Jay. Your Mom is so young. Is she generally in good health? If so, those 2 facts will help a lot in fighting this disease plus the fact now they say women are more likely to survive lung cancer. Does she have Small Cell or Non small cell? They have some diffences in the treatment. I think you are wonderful to scout out info for her. We need lots of help like that when we are going through this very stressful experience. We need someone at our appointments with us taping or taking notes also! The second opinion is a great idea. Keep us posted.

Donna G

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Hi Jay,

I'm really sorry to hear about your mom's diagnosis. There is plenty of hope though. I too was dx. with stage IV in May, 2005. I started with chemo treatment and am now first having radiation. Every doctor is different as is every patient.

I would go for a second opinion just to put my mind at ease to make sure I'm doing everything I possibly could be doing. If you are not at a large LC facility like LC treatment centers of america, I think it is very important you do that, because they are usually on the cutting edge of what is available. I go to Sloan Kettering in NYC and was put on a drug called Avastin from day one, which was not approved for lung, but has become one of the main staples for lung cancer.

Any, I wish you all the luck and we're all here for you with any and all questions.

Joan

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I'm so sorry you've had this terrible diagnosis. A second opinion is good, but if you are at one of the cancer centers it's probably not necessary. They have cancer specialists, or radiation specialists, who meet and discuss diagnosis. In smaller hospitals, they have a tumor board, but they simply do not have the same experience and often they do not have the same money to be at the front of trials and leading new protocols. I know, my brother-in-law was the head of the tumor board at his hospital in NYC. He is amazed at what they do hear and how quickly etc.

I do not have knowledge in your area, but do look up how they rank in cancer care.

By the way - I'm just finishing my radiation to T7 and T7 and I feel great - pain all gone, no side effects except a little tired.

Good luck. I was diagnosed 15 months ago and haven't felt sick yet. I have had to have mets taken care of - but nothing too bad.

Mary

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Jay,

Welcome to the board. I am so sorry that you need to be here though :( I can say that we were thrilled with our second opinion.

My dad was told from his small town doc that they see something on the CT...this was 2 weeks after the CT. They were going to set up something with the "lung specialist" the following week.

All of us kids were going crazy with wait...plus we wanted him at the best place possible...so we got him in to Mayo in Rochester,MN where we are understanding that there are some of the best docs in the world. Well, in a matter of 2 days they had him diagnosed, biopsied, and started on treatment because he had SVC which essentially means the tumor is cutting off blood supply with the heart...bad deal....untreated the life expectancy is 2-4 months. As you can see we DID NOT have the time to wait.

So, we are firm believers in the second opinion.

Jay, I hope so much you find some answers, and that God blesses you with peace at this time. We pray for miracles everyday, and I will add you to the list!

God bless,

Jen

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Thank you all for the welcome and the quick reply.

We should find out today if the cancer is sclc or nsclc.

What do you all think about Natural remedies/helpers like Milk thistle, pomagranite juice etc. to help fight cancer? When I found out about my mothers diagnosis all I did and still am doing is looking for anything that could help.

~Jay

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Hello Jay and welcome~

I am glad you posted here. This is the best group of people you could possibly find to help you out with information and support.

I must agree with the others who like the 2nd opinion option. My feeling is that when fighting this disease you need to investigate every potential option as well as have the 2nd and even more opinions. There is a saying around here, one that I have used in the past with my personal dealings with this disease and that is Knowledge is Power. The more you can learn the better prepared you will be in the overall big picture

Continue to post here, give us some more information about your mom's cancer type, etc and ask any questions you have. I promise you will get replies and you will find all the support you need here, too.

Sending prayers and positive thoughts to you, your mom and your family,

Chris

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Hello Jay!

Sorry to hear about your mother. I'm glad that she has someone as devoted as you are looking after her.

I spent a week at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Zion Illinois. It's the same regiment you could expect in OK City. They offer not only the traditional radiation/chemo, but a more advanced radiation called tomotherapy. Additionally, they introduce you to homopathic medicine, religious intervention and physical therapy. All of this, combined with a diet designed for your mom will make her feel tons better when she leaves there. I did! And I met alot of new friends who are going through the same there. There are also group sessions for caregivers.

As far as the t7 tumor goes, I had one of those puppies. Radiation took care of it. Quick and simple.

Tell her to keep fighting and don't give up! It's all about attitude and how badly she wants it!!

We're all here to help.

Darrell

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Hi Jay, Sorry to hear about your mom but glad you found us here to help you. It does sound like your mom's doctors are on top of the situation and have a plan in place, which is good. It still could be a good idea to get a second opinion. We took my mom to a larger cancer center a bit further away from home to get a second opinion (and to see if she was eligible for Cyberknife). They stated she was not eligible for Cyberknife as the tumor was too large and confirmed they would do the same course of treatment as the original oncologist suggested. And mom was more comfortable getting her treatment closer to home so that is where she went. But we all felt better after hearing another doctor suggest the same course of treatment and to know we had checked out our options.

Hope your mom's treatment puts this beast to rest!

Karen

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Hi Jay; I am sorry your mom got lc. The below hospital had a good cancer treatment center. They have the latest equipment in the radiation oncology dept.

St. Anthony Hospital

Oklahoma City, OK, 73101, USA

Don M

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Jay~

Sorry to hear about your mom. We have had several members go to the CTC in Oklahoma - one person had surgery there. Everyone has been very positive about it. Good luck to your mom- let us know how things go.

Rochelle

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Welcome, Jay. A second opinion is a good thing, I think, just to cover the bases. We held that option but didn't exercise it because the onc we got was so assertive and proactive that we never had to. My wife's main tumor migrated from the left lung over to the spine and she had radiation for it, which took away the pain and the tumor. Wishing your mom all the best. Keep us posted. Don

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Hi Jay,

Welcome here and sorry for all the anguish you are going through finding out you mom has this dreaded desease. Just know that it is not a death sentence, it can be controlled. There are so many different kinds of treatments out there now, if one does not work they will try something else. Make sure you keep a positive attitude around her as that will help her get through this.

She will start to feel better once she starts her treatments.

As far as a second opinion goes, that is up to how you feel about the doctors who are working on her now.

Ours were great, so we did not go for a second. But if you are not comfortable, by all means go for a second.

Keep us posted, we are always here for you for support or any questions you may have.

Maryanne

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Hi Jay,

I'm so sorry that you had to find us here, but I can attest that this is the best forum for information and support. It surely has done wonders for me.

I am a big believer in second opinions. Every doctor is different in how they believe the course of treatment should go. I would definitely say that your mother's youth will be an asset in this battle and if she is in relatively good health then that's even better.

I am also an advocate for some natural remedies. I just PMed you too, so if you want more info about what my father does just let me know.

Good luck and please know that my prayers and thoughts will be with you.

Shirley

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My mother was given this poem by a friend and I wanted to share it.

Think Positive

If you think you are beaten, you are.

If you think you dare not, you don't.

Success begins with your own will..

Its all in your state mind.

Life's battles are not always won by those who are stronger or faster ;

Sooner or later the person who wins

is the person who thinks he/she can!

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Hi Jay,

right now the fear is overwhelming and the questions are many. I went through this too many times. My mom was dx with NSC in Jan 03 but I lost her in Aug 03, then my dad was dx 4 months later in Dec 03 and died in June 04. the day dad ws burried my sister was dx'd with breast cancer but she is well now. and then again my FIL was dx with NSC and I lost him too.

bring a note book, a list of your questions, and always have an additional person at all of moms appointments. Always be proactive and never NOT question the doctors. If you dont question them they will sometimes not put in the fight you are willing too. If that happens get another oncologist. My sister was going to go to mom and dads onc. but since it was so recent, we begged her to see someone else and that onc. fighted for and with my sister.

Never give up the fight and never loose hope. as long as there is breath there is hope.

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Jay,

As far as your question re natural remedies, please check with your medical oncologist, because when you are going through chemo, they may not want you on any supplements, even vitamins.

I would post under Alternative & Complimentary Therapies as we have some people that are very well versed in this area. Where are you ALISA???? and others.

Take care,

Joan

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Jay,

I am very sorry to hear of your mom's diagnosis. This is certainly a disease that affects the entire family, and it sounds like you are being very proactive in helping do what you can to fight this beast.

I also recommend getting a second opinion. My mom went to Cancer Treatment Centers of america in Zion, and had a wonderful experience. I was just thinking this AM about how they really do make the whole process much more bearable. People are there to guide you and help you every step of the way. They are an integrative medicine center, so you don't have naturopaths pulling you one direction and doctors pulling you in the other; they both work side by side to bring you the best treatment in all aspects. We considered ourselves very fortunate to have found this place for my mom. They took fantastic care of ME, too...to say nothing of what they did for my mom...

Please visit the other boards, also. You will find a wealth of information from all of these very knowledgeable people. I'm glad you found this site. You'll see that bringing all of these things together will make a big picture which will help decide what is best for your mom.

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Jay,

I know the shock that comes from this diagnosis. I found this board when I was doing the ol' Internet shuffle, trying to find something positive out there!

There are lots of good hospitals in OKC. I have a friend who has had great success at St. Anthony's, and Mom has been extremely happy with Mercy. I don't know too much about the others.

When Mom was diagnosed, their best guess was that she would have 12-18 months. That was 17.5 months ago, and she is doing very well--going to birthday parties, family events, church each week--she even went to Cabo this summer!

Don't be afraid to ask questions along the way--ask the Drs., the nurses, you can even ask us! Just remember to take care of yourself along this journey as well. Most of us are familiar with Caregiver burnout. Trust me, we aren't helping our loved ones at that point.

Take care and keep us updated!

:) Kelly

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Thankd for all of your for the positive support and information! I really appreciate it.

My mother is going in for a PET scan today and then starts radiation on her T7 vert. on Tuesday. Hopefully it will ease the pain she has in her back? Then we have a meeting Thurdsay with Oncologist about chemo treatments.

~Jay

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